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 Forum index » Instruments and Equipment » Theremin
Jaycar Theremin
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ian-s



Joined: Apr 01, 2004
Posts: 2585
Location: Auckland, New Zealand
Audio files: 42
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 23, 2007 8:44 pm    Post subject: Jaycar Theremin Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I have a Jaycar electronics store a short walk from home. They have a simple theremin for sale NZ$72 (KIT) and $119 (assembled).
I tried it out in store. The sales person used an unregulated power pack which caused a prominent 60Hz pitch modulation, a good power pack would fix this I think.

The volume plate seemed to work quite well but the pitch antenna had only about a 25cm range. The pitch range was also compressed mostly into the first couple of centimeters (about 1 inch).

Is this just typical of inexpensive designs?

Does the pitch range compression apply even to the better theremins?
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kkissinger



Joined: Mar 28, 2006
Posts: 1221
Location: Kansas City, Mo USA
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 23, 2007 9:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

The Jaycar reportedly can, with modifications, become a playable Theremin however the out-of-the-box kit is really more for sound effects than traditional note-playing.

You are correct -- the more expensive Theremins exhibit improved linearity over the inexpensive models. The problem with an "el cheapo" model is that the difficulty in playing it may lead you to believe that the Theremin is just "impossible" to play.

If you are interested in playing the Theremin (as opposed to kit building) you might want to consider one of the Moog Theremins: namely an Etherwave Standard or Pro. Both are very playable.

For kit-building, the Paia Theremax is fun to build, has a nice tone, and with an improved antenna, has decent linearity (not as good as either of the Moogs, though).

The plate on the Jaycar Theremin may be positioned too close to the pitch antenna... meaning that your volume movements may inadvertently affect the pitch.
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